The Economic Freedom Fighters’ (EFF) advocate Tembeka Ngcukaitobi has argued in the Supreme Court of Appeal in Bloemfontein that the SARS commissioner’s interview was corrupt. The advocate has told the court that there is a distinction between the secrecy of the job interview and criticism around its process.
The EFF is appealing a defamation judgment in a case involving former Finance Minister Trevor Manuel. The EFF published a tweet last year objecting to what it called a nepotistic and corrupt process in selecting the Revenue Services’ Commissioner.
The party was ordered by the High Court in Johannesburg to remove the statement which was published on social media and apologise to Manuel. The court further ordered them to pay R500 000 in damages for defamation.
Ngcukaitobi has argued that the accusation of corruption relates to the alleged relationship Manuel has with SARS commissioner Edward Kieswetter.
“Corruption and nepotism relate to the alleged relationship between Mr Manuel and Mr Kieswater but the secrecy of the interview is the self-standing accusation. Is a synonym for clandestine no seditious. Yes, but none of those words are used in relation to the interview. I am not suggesting that we should I am simply saying there are separates facts the accusation of corruption and nepotism relate to the alleged relationship.”